BelMix Seminar "Asian migrant spouses in Japan: Migration and reproduction in an ageing society"

Le 04/05/2023

by Hélène Le Bail, CNRS research fellow/CERI, Sciences Po Paris/MSH/EASt visiting professor.

This event is part of BelMix Seminar Series-2023

This presentation will examine the nexus between the immigration of women through transnational marriages to Japan and the issue of reproductive workload in a rapidly ageing society, or even in a society under a process of depopulation. Working from a definition of reproductive work which includes both paid and unpaid work, the article first places the case of female marriage migration in regards to Japanese migration policies concerning the sector of care work. The hypothesis is that, in a country where care work is less externalized and where immigration opportunities for care workers are limited compared to the neighboring countries, marriage migrants may have been an alternative to fill a need in workforce. Secondly, based on empirical case studies, the article examines if concretely the migrant spouses have fulfilled or not some expectations in terms of reproductive work.

Hélène Le Bail She is a research fellow at the CNRS and at the International Research Center (CERI) of Sciences Po Paris. She is affiliated member with the Convergences Migrations Institute. Doctor in political science/international relations, she is also a graduate in Chinese language and civilization (Inalco). She was a researcher at the Franco-Japanese House of Tokyo (CNRS-MAEE) and a visiting researcher at the University of Kobe. Her work focuses on Asian migrations to Japan and France from a comparative perspective. A more specific interest is given to female migratory routes (marriage, reproductive work and sex work), as well as to issues of mobilization, collective action and political participation. She coordinates the ANR PolAsia project (Political participation of populations from Asian immigration in France) and co-coordinates the JSPS project (Japan) “Rethinking the Nexus Migration and Sex Work trafficking”. She published with Khatharya Um “Post-Refugee Generations. Descendants of Southeast Asian refugees in France” (2023) and with Ya-Han Chuang “Making anti-Asian racism recognised: the construction of a public problem through the legal process” (Marronnages, 2022).

Thursday 4 May 2023 from 10 am to 11 pm

Room Doucy S12.123 ULB - Campus du Solbosch
Building S - Level 12
Avenue Jeanne 44
1000 Bruxelles

Registration is required here. This session will also take place online via Zoom.


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